The bank still holds up to 44 billion shillings which remained of the 62 billion which was the total set aside to revive the tourism industry from the covid-19 setback, out of which only 18.2 billion was disbursed.
The European Union -EU and the Uganda Development
Bank- UDB, have implored operators in the tourism industry to come and finish
the remainder of the EU / Uganda Development Bank Tourism Intervention Fund relief
The bank still holds 44 billion
shillings which remained of the 62 billion which was the total set aside to revive
the tourism industry from the covid-19 setback, out of which only 18.2 billion was
While launching the second call for applications
in Kampala, the state minister for tourism Martin Mugarra Bahinduka, says that though
some operators benefited from the first phase of the programme, the numbers are
very few compared to the number of players in the sector.
He adds that he expects that the relaxed
conditions will help more people to benefit;
//Cue in; “because not everyone …//
Cue out; …amongst the tour operators.”//
Of the 62 billion, UDB contributed 40
billion, and the European union complemented it with a 21.8 billion grant, impacting the interest rate, which reduced from 12% to 8%.
Caroline Adriaensen the head of cooperation,
delegations of European union Uganda, says that since the first phase 18 months
ago, it has been a very serious ground-breaking operation because of its nature
of involving the EU. The country has experienced the results of the government and the different associations working as
partners on loan and grant at the same time.
Andriaensen adds that the operations have
been slow and unfavourable because they had to make sure that the combination
of grant and loan works effectively;
//Cue in; “for profit-making …//
Cue out; … applying for a loan,”//
She says that the new call is designed to
fit in the context of the industry as of now since the pandemic is slowly being
//Cue in; “looking at the sector….//
Cue out; … the sector today.”//
Patricia Ojangole the managing director of
Uganda Development Bank, says that they learnt many lessons from the first
phase, and the challenges associated therein were addressed.
Ojangole says that they have come up with the
second phase because the fund is still available and they believe that the
industry still needs the support;
//Cue in; “we are coming …….//
Cue out; …. Returning to normalcy.”//
Samuel Edem Maitum the director for credit
at UDB, says that the bank has even relaxed the terms and requirements of the
applicants, having learnt from what has been disqualifying most of the applicants.
Edem says that in the first phase of the
facility, only 94 companies applied, of which 44 qualified for the loan and
consumed only 18.2 billion and this brought in questions to which we found
//Cue in; “the tourism sector….//
Cue out; …. and the loan.”//
According to Edem, this second call is to
help businesses in the tourism value chain to stand steadily on their feet.
“We refined this particular call which has
the grant portion, to stimulate and sustain these businesses which have at
least survived the pandemic.”
Under the new arrangements, qualifying
businesses will receive a maximum of 1 billion shillings and a minimum of 100
They also have to indicate their greening
programme as they are applying for the loan, must have been in business not less
than two years, and must have more than 5 employees, among other requirements.